Could I maybe get opinions on a game concept?


#1

I’m thinking about writing a game where the premise is that your character is an average person who stumbles upon a group of people who have the ability to give out superpowers.

Your character isn’t some type of chosen one or anything, it’s just sheer happenstance they find themselves in this situation opening it up to as much diversity as you want. (I have plans to allow you to select gender, and orientation but they would be mostly cosmetic as there’s no plans for any romance)

There’s 7 possible superpowers, and 7 possible “extras”, and through a series of ~40 questions your answers wrack up points towards each option. There’s also 6 different characters that roughly follow the D&D alignment guide that you cycle through during the course of play to give you a diversity of options and responses which also count towards your influence on what you end up with.

My question is mostly: is a game where you only see about 100 pages – MAYBE 150 – going to be long enough to keep interest, especially when multiple plays would feel really similar?

I don’t want to have 14 stat bars, and so my plan was to make them hidden variables. You would see the relationships with the six characters – who each represent an alignment – to have a somewhat gauge of how you were doing.

Alternatively I could make the seven super powers visible, and hide the extras; but I also feel like that could be incredibly irritating trying to get all the possible options with out being able to tell what answers influenced each stat.

Any suggestions from more experienced game makers?


#2

I wouldn’t add a choice for orientation if you’re not going to have romance, because if people see that they can pick their orientation they’re most likely going to assume there will be romance. Just my opinion on that matter.

Your game sounds pretty cool. Anything to do with superpowers seems cool to me. :stuck_out_tongue:


#3

i think it would work, but propably only as free game, to make some advertisement for yourself, or at best with 0,99 price tag and even then people wouldnt be all too happy with price.


#4

I have no problem with hidden stats, but I think you should make sure to have a clear conflict in your story and let the player choose a goal or give them one and let them choose a path to that goal. In Choice of the Dragon, the goal is ‘be a mighty and feared dragon,’ in Choice of Robots you can choose if you want to go for empathy, military, grace.

I think seven powers and seven hidden bonuses, but only three or four different ‘goals’ your character goes after, might work well.


#5

It sounds… Interesting


#6

@Samuel_H_Young mentioned that Trial of the Demon Hunter was around 85,000 words, and that he got some criticism for selling a game that short (and so decided to make the sequel longer.) His game has a fair amount of replayability, through achievements and different choices leading to different scenes throughout the game. So I think if you were writing a game that was both short and fairly linear, the suggestion of pricing it lower or releasing it for free is a good one. Maybe you could think of this like a free introduction to whatever the next game in the series is, if you think this concept has more than one game in it? I could see it being at least a trilogy.

As for hidden stats - if I go to a stat screen and see NOTHING I am disappointed and wonder whether the designer added any. How about keeping the actual stats hidden, but displaying a line of text to describe what path you’re on? (The idea of tracking them through NPC relationships is neat, but I think it’s too subtle for most people to catch on a first playthrough.) Like, if you are moving towards the mind-reading superpower, the combination of your stats would produce the description, “You are becoming more attuned to how others think” Etc.